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Reminder to Employers: Avoid hiring a person not registered as a nurse

Regularly check the registration of your nurse employees

February 17, 2017 — In November 2016. the College of Nurses of Ontario became aware that Laura Erskine of Saint George, Ontario was employed as a nurse without being registered with the College. The College sent Ms Erskine a letter warning her to cease and desist this activity. Following an investigation, the College sought and on February 15, 2017 obtained a court order preventing Ms Erskine from describing herself as a nurse, holding herself out as someone who is qualified to practise as a nurse, and performing any controlled acts as described in the Nursing Act.

Only members of the College of Nurses of Ontario can use the title nurse or any of its common derivatives, such as RN or RPN, and practise as a nurse.  

The College reminds employers of their obligation to confirm that nurses employed in their facility or agency are entitled to practise nursing. They can do this at any time by using the College’s public register, Find a Nurse, on the College’s website at cno.org. Find a Nurse provides current and accurate information about every nurse in Ontario. On its website, the College also provides a list of individuals that employers should scrutinize particularly carefully.  

All employers are encouraged to check Find a Nurse regularly. For facilities and agencies that employ a large number of nurses, the College offers an easy-to-use service called Nurse Renewal Check.   

Employers, nurses and members of the public who may have information about anyone they suspect of practising as a nurse without being registered with the College should contact the College’s investigation team at investigations-intake@cnomail.org.

Page last reviewed February 16, 2017